You beat cancer by how you live,
why you live and in the manner in which you live.
Every now and then you hear a story that reaches deep down and touches
something in your soul.
It reminds you of what is truly important.
It reminds you that life is fleeting and very fragile.
It reminds you about resilience.
It reminds you that what is happening in our country, in our culture…
those things that we are doing and saying to and about one another are things that
truly don’t matter.
This is a story about a college, Perdue University to be exact, and about one of its students…
or maybe it’s a story about all of its students…
Perdue is a University in West Lafayette, Indiana.
The student body and the athletes are known as the Boilermakers.
In 1889, Purdue played Wabash College in Crawfordsville, Indiana,
and won the game 18-4. Students from the college and citizens of Crawfordsville began
calling the Purdue players “a great big burly gang of corn-huskers”, “grangers”,
“pumpkin-shuckers”, “railsplitters”, “blacksmiths,” “cornfield sailors”, and “foundry hands”.
The Purdue students experienced hands-on education at the university, including the maintenance
of a fully operational steam locomotive.
Purdue defeated Wabash College again in 1891, 44–0.
An account of the game in the Crawfordsville Daily Argus News of October 26, 1891 was headlined,
“Slaughter of Innocents: Wabash Snowed Completely Under by the Burly Boiler Makers from Purdue”.
Purdue became known as the boilermakers the next year. (Wikipedia)
We all have our sports teams that we love—teams that we follow with unabandon and yes,
teams we truly even adore.
We become one on gameday.
We are the 12th man…we are the fans.
Some of us are bigger fans than others…for all sorts of reasons.
And sometimes being a fan spurs us on to will ourselves to literally live another day.
Or so it seems…
His name is Tyler Trent and as of this past week, he was a sophomore at the Perdue University.
Tyler is all of 20 years old.
Tyler had to withdraw from classes earlier this term because Tyler has terminal cancer.
Tyler has become an inspiration to his fellow Boilermakers because he epitomizes the
concept of what it means to be not only a super fan but Tyler epitomize what it is
to be a fighter.
The chant “Cancer sucks” has become the rallying cry of the student body this year…
the chant before each kickoff is no longer the traditional IU (their arch rival) sucks,
but rather the rallying cry is Cancer Sucks…
because it does.
Tyler is under hospice care.
Yet he wanted desperately to attend the big Ohio St Game Saturday evening…
but things throughout the week weren’t looking good.
Tyler was really really sick.
His body failing.
His doctors said there was no way that he’d make the game…
no one was certain Tyler would be alive for the game.
Perdue has an almost spilt win/loss season thus far this season
Perdue’s match with Ohio State was not to be in Perdue’s favor.
Perdue was not supposed to be any sort of match for the number 2 ranked Ohio State.
It was to be a pushover game for the Buckeyes as their sites are resting on dethroning
the number 1 Alabama Crimson Tide.
Perdue was just another team on the path to the dethroning of a more worthy opponent…
Heck, Perdue isn’t even ranked, no big deal right?!!
Miracles of all sorts do happen…
Here is a link to the story from the Indystar regarding the big win and
how Tyler got to the big game.
Our prayers are with all of those who, like Tyler, are suffering due to illness and disease…
(as well as for Natalie who is close to my heart here in cookieland
as well as for my college roommate Carol)
Holy Spirit, drive away from me all forms of sickness and disease.
restore strength to my body and joy to my spirit,
so that in my renewed health,
I may bless and serve you,
now and forevermore.